The government started what it called a consultation process on extending the program of selling Maltese and European citizenship to anyone that can pay a million euro. Its so-called consultation dodged the one real question that should be asked: should the scheme be extended.

The government has already decided it will be. It just needs a PR stunt to quote as popular support for the scheme when it continues to package our dignity as a nation and sell it to billionaires, crooks, tax dodgers, fugitives and other characters entirely uninterested in our country accept as a trampoline into Europe.

Il-Kenniesa, who have my favourite name of all the civil society NGOs currently in business, retorted with another survey. It will effect government policy as much as the government’s own survey — that is, not at all — but it’s still worth filling out if anything to have the satisfaction of answering the questions we wanted the government to ask us.

The passport scheme must be stopped. It is immoral to monetize our collective identity as a nation. Its supposed advantages are over-stated. We have experienced no contribution to the common good from these people, there have been no investments, no projects, no cultural enrichment as a result of the scheme. The fees paid to government and intermediaries are substantial but finite and make no long-term contribution to the growth of the country. Its disadvantages are palpable: it has had an inflationary impact on property, it has pushed people out of affordable rentals, it has left properties empty while people who could afford them live in garages and hovels. The rest of Europe is concerned with the security loophole ed we have created and our national reputation continues to suffer.

Whether you agree with me on this or you don’t, do please fill out this Kenniesa survey.